Man in custody after crash and shootout with DPS troopers in central Phoenix

One trooper was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.
Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 9:37 PM MST|Updated: Aug. 11, 2022 at 4:04 PM MST

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) — A man is in custody after an attempted traffic stop led to a shootout involving Department of Public Safety troopers in central Phoenix on Wednesday night. Troopers say just after 7:30 p.m., a trooper tried to pull over a Dodge Challenger that was speeding on Interstate 17. However, the driver, 37-year-old Douglas L. Clifton, then sped away and sideswiped another car. Investigators say Clifton crashed into the fencing on the Grant Street overpass at I-17 and ran off. Troopers and Clifton ended up near 22nd Avenue and Grant Street, north of Buckeye Road.

A trooper tried to use a stun gun on Clifton, who turned around and started shooting. The trooper returned fire, and Clifton then ran away. Investigators say another trooper caught up to Clifton, who began shooting again. However, the second trooper didn’t shoot back at him, and Clifton continued running. A third trooper eventually caught up to Clifton, and a shootout began.

No troopers were shot, but one had to be taken to the hospital for minor injuries.

Clifton ran away again and tried to hide in a shed in a homeowner’s backyard. The family was evacuated from their home, investigators say. Troopers found Clifton hiding in the shed, and he had been shot in the foot. He was then taken into custody. No troopers were shot, but one had to be taken to the hospital for minor injuries. The family was OK as well.

Clifton was booked on three counts of attempted first-degree murder, three counts of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer and three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. This is the 42nd officer-involved shooting in Maricopa County and the 62nd in the state in 2022.